TripAdvisor is paying careful attention to how it's perceived abroad in order to better position itself against rivals such as Booking.com.
TripAdvisor launched its first national ad campaign in late September.
The online reviews website started testing the TV ads in several U.S. markets in June. However, the launch was delayed after TripAdvisor completely changed the direction of the campaign. The new ads started airing in the U.S. this fall.
TripAdvisor kept the original videos it tested in June and set them to different languages to air in Spain, France, and Argentina.
Travelers Know TripAdvisor in the U.S.
TripAdvisor is running a campaign with several different advertisements in the U.S. The ads assume the viewer already has some knowledge of TripAdvisor and its iconic rating “bubbles.”
This is the first time we’ve heard the five green circles that appear at the top of every TripAdvisor page as bubbles. The number of colored circles gives users a quick and basic rating for each business.
“The bubbles are one of our icons and they represent the reason people come to the site,” says TripAdvisor vice president of brand strategy Anne Bologna. “They are so much a core of who we are and why people come to us so we wanted to focus on it. That message is the basis of the TV ads.”
The U.S. ads share less information about the website than the foreign ads. The videos focus on a specific experience that highlights how small details impact travelers’ perception of destinations and businesses.
Bologna says TripAdvisor will use the bubble theme in future campaigns if it continues to resonate with viewers.
How Ads Differ in International Markets
The ads running Spain, France, and Argentina do more to explain what TripAdvisor is and how travelers can use the website. The videos show where travelers can find ratings, reviews, and photos.
“It was a similar message executed slightly differently. We learned a lot from that [summer] test. TripAdvisor awareness varies around the world so we thought it’d be extremely helpful in those markets.”
TripAdvisor has good reason to invest in overseas marketing as more than 50 percent of its traffic comes from outside of America. The company may expand the TV advertising campaign to additional countries in the future.
“One of the reasons we’re testing in those three markets is to test international markets. When those tests are over, we’ll be evaluating where to go next.”
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